بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
The Month of Righteous Deeds (which are done to earn Allah’s Pleasure)
رب صائم ليس له من صيامه إلا الجوع ورب قائم ليس له من قيامه إلا السهر
It was narrated from Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu) that the Prophet (salallahu alaihi wasallam) said: “There are people who fast and get nothing from their fast except hunger, and there are those who pray and get nothing from their prayer but a sleepless night.” [Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadeeth No. 1690. Graded “hasan sahih” by Al-Albani in Sahih Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadeeth No. 1690.]
Planning to go for Hajj or Umrah?
Well then, you might want to try my new blog (I’m still adding stuff):
You might also like to read this post which contains some analogies of Ramadan and Hajj.
Perhaps you like pictures more? No worries. Here’s a photoblog (I’m adding stuff to this one as well) about Hajj and Umrah:
Comments and suggestions are welcome.
Please feel free to tell all your Hajj-bound family/friends/colleagues/whoever about the blogs.
[Just a note: An anonymous person wrote a comment criticizing something that I said in Part 2. I had no problem with that. All comments are welcome.
However, this individual used MY email address when typing in the comment. (You cannot submit a comment without typing in a valid email address.)
That REALLY annoyed me. I don’t mind being criticized but I hate lies and cowardice, especially considering the fact that this is Ramadan.
Why am I telling you all this? Simple. If you wish to write a comment in the future, then please don’t make the mistake of using my email address, just because you want to remain anonymous. You can either create a new email address for this purpose or else please refrain from commenting. If I see that anybody has used my email address for writing a comment, I’ll delete the comment then and there. I don’t like dealing with liars and cowards.]
Okay, so now that I’ve said what I had to say (I always say what I have to say, don’t I?), let’s continue with our checklist:
18) The Month of Integrity
What integrity is NOT: using the blog owner’s email address to write an anonymous comment.
What integrity IS: using your OWN email address to air your comments. And if you happen to behave in a manner other than that, then you should be willing to apologize. [Yes, this individual really did annoy me. May Allah forgive her.]
In the last 10 days, did our integrity improve? Were we honest in our dealings?
Do you know how Islam spread to places like Indonesia and Malaysia? Through honest Muslim traders. The people of those lands were totally amazed at how honest these individuals were with their business dealings.
I’ll tell you two stories that happened to me:
1) Many years ago, paid parking was introduced in our parking lot. So, in the beginning (before we all got the parking cards), I used to rush down every hour to get the ticket. Sometimes, I would put in AED 5 for two hours. (AED = Arab Emirate Dirhams.)
One day, I didn’t have any change so I went to the light shop under my house to get change for AED 5. There was an old south Indian Hindu man there. I knew him well because he had worked there for years and I had basically grown up in that building. So I asked him for change. He only had AED 4.75 so I gave him the AED 5 bill and took the change.
That was that, right? I mean, who would care about 25 fils? A quarter of a dirham? He did.
He come up to me a few days later and gave me the 25 fils. I was shocked and told him not to worry about it. He insisted that I take it because he couldn’t keep it. Subhan Allah.
I was so sad that this kind of integrity came from a non-Muslim and not a Muslim. We’re usually too ashamed to even return such a small amount in case the other person laughs at us.
[He left for India a few years ago. If I had to choose one person in the entire world that I would want Allah to guide to Islam, it would be him. I ask Allah by His Beautiful Names that He guide this man to Islam for this act that he did. Ameen.] Read more
Yes indeed. It’s time for a rant.
So, if you’ll permit me…
Ramadan is the Month of Fitness, not the Month of Fatness.
Ramadan is the Month of Piety, not the Month of Party.
Ramadan is the Month of Fasting, not the Month of Food.
Ramadan is the Month of Abstinence, not the Month of Stuffing-Yourself-Until-You-Drop-Dead.
Ramadan is the Month of Wiping Out your sins from your book of deeds, not the Month of Writing More Sins to your book of deeds.
Ramadan is the Month of the Quran. And no, that does not mean taking a dusty Mushaf off your shelves after 10 months and 20 days and reading it without tajweed, understanding or application.
Ramadan is the Month of Starting Afresh – which means starting a new life until the end of your life, not a new life until Shawwal.
Ramadan is the Month of Silence, not the Month of Socialising (Hello Iftar Parties Full of Gheebah. I’m talking to YOU.)
Ramadan is the Month of Sisterhood (and Brotherhood), not the Month of Cat fights. (Hello Sisters in the Masjid. I’m talking to YOU).
Ramadan is the Month of Giving in Charity, not the Month of Being a Cheapskate.
Ramadan actually lasts for a whole Month, not just the 27th night.
Ramadan actually lasts from Fajr until Fajr, not from Fajr until Maghrib.(Hello Sheesha Addicts and Majlis Tent Goers. I’m talking to YOU.)
Ramadan is the Month where the Gates of Paradise are opened and the Gates of Hell are closed. So why exactly do we behave as if the Gates of Hell are open and the Gates of Paradise are closed?
Ramadan is the Month where we pray more, not the (only) Month where we pray.
Ramadan is the Month of Manners. You’d think people could at least try for a measly 29-30 days to ACT nice???
Ramadan is the Month of Smiling, not the Month of Snarling.
Ramadan is the Month of Tawheed (worshipping Allah alone), not the Month of Shirk (ascribing partners to Him). How truly sad it is that nobody knows what Tawheed is, when it is the Right of Allah and the Key to Paradise.
Ramadan is the Month where we increase our presence in the Masjids, not the Month where we increase our presence in the Restaurants.
Ramadan is the Month where we Seek Forgiveness, not the Month where we Seek Food.
Ramadan is the Month of Activity, not the Month of Sleep.
Ramadan is the Month of Striving, not the Month of Snoring.
Ramadan is the Month where we go the extra mile to please Allah, not where we go the extra mile to please our stomachs.
Ramadan is the Month of Increasing in Prayers and Khushoo (humility) not the Month of Increasing in Pakoras and Kushari.
Ramadan is the Month of Dawah to Allah, not the Month of Dawah to your Iftar Party.
Ramadan is the Month of Health, which means that manufacturers of cooking oil should NOT be making profits at this time of year.
Ramadan is the Month of Improving your (hereafter) CV, not the Month of Befriending your TV.
Ramadan is the Month of Atoning (for your sins), not the Month of Moaning and Groaning (about the hunger, ibadaah, etc).
Ramadan is the Month where we strive to get mentioned by Allah to His Angels, not the Month where we strive to get mentioned by your Iftar party guests (“Ooh, what a fantastic host you are!”).
Ramadan is the Month where we stand in rows waiting for the Salah to begin, not the Month where we stand in lines waiting to order the food.
Ramadan is the Month where we visit the Masjids, not the Month where we visit the Majlises.
Ramadan is where we behave NORMALLY (where we act likes the slaves of Allah). It’s the rest of the year where we behave ABNORMALLY (where we act like slaves of this world).
Brother Abu Uwais was right. We need a Ramadan.
Okay, I just had to get that out of my system.
Yes, I know. That was nasty but it was the sad truth wasn’t it?
We’ll all strive to do better this year, insha-Allah.
[Little hint: Go in the first few days if you can because it’s jam packed towards the end of Ramadan.]
[A little note about Umrah: Most people do not realise that there is a dispute amongst the scholars about whether Umrah is obligatory or not. Some say yes, it has to be performed once in a lifetime, if one is able to perform the journey (obviously if you do Hajj At-Tamattu or Hajj Al-Qiran, both of which contain Umrah, then that’s enough.) Other scholars point out that it is just recommended.
I used to take the latter opinion until I found quite a few ahadeeth (I have them all with me so feel free to ask) which made me change my mind. I now hold the former view i.e. that it is an obligation to do it once in your lifetime if you can afford to do so.
Am I telling you this to make you change your mind? No, I just want everyone to be aware that there is such a dispute so that if you can afford to do Umrah and you have never done so, then just go ahead and finish it off as it might be an obligation. ]
If this is the first time that you’re going for Umrah, then I’d advise you to buy one of the few books that’s dedicated to Umrah alone (i.e. without mentioning Hajj). It’s called “The Ultimate Guide to Umrah” by Abu Muneer Ismail Davids. It’s based on his excellent book “Getting the best out of Hajj” with two additional chapters on Umrah in Ramadan and Visiting Madinah.
It’s not online* (not that I know of anyway). You can buy it from Darussalam. though. This is what it looks like: http://store.dar-us-salam.com/product/201.html
[*Some of it is on Google books. If you have the patience to refresh the page a million times, eventually you’ll get to see all the pages of the book, insha-Allah.]
[For Sisters in Dubai / Sharjah / Ajman, if you can’t find the book, you’re welcome to borrow my book. Feel free to ask, no worries.]
This is another book that you could buy: http://www.darussalam.com/product_info.php?products_id=907
Want online resources? Sure.